If you already have a hardwood floor, consider yourself lucky!  You’re the owner of a stylish, durable and easy-to-clean flooring material.  And you don’t have to make any decisions when it comes to shade or colour.  However, if you’re trying to decide on the right hardwood floor for a new installation you’ll have to make some tough decisions – like how to choose between light and dark hardwood.  Which shade is better?  That depends on a few factors.  Find out what those are in this post.

Keeping The Floor Clean

The fact is that the colour of your floor will have no influence on how dirty your floor gets.  However, whether you have a light or dark hardwood floor will definitely influence how much dirt is visible when it inevitably arrives.  Light hardwood floors hide dirt much better than darker hardwoods.  If you have hair-shedding pets, children or you just don’t have the time to sweep your floors every day, a lighter shade hardwood floor will allow your house to appear cleaner for longer.

Keeping The Floor Free Of Scratches

Similar to dirt, the shade of your hardwood floor will have no bearing on how many scratches occur or how deep those gouges get.  But a lighter coloured floor won’t show scratches as prominently as a dark coloured hardwood floor will.  Again, this should make you think twice about dark hardwood flooring materials if you have kids or pets.  They’ll very likely have less concern about scratching your flooring investment than you will.

Ease Of Installation

If you’re installing prefinished planks, their colour will have no influence over the length of time it takes to install them.  However, if you’ve gone for a darker coloured, unfinished floor, you might need to add extra coats of stain to get the appropriate shade.  This may cause the installation of a darker unfinished floor to take longer than a lighter coloured unfinished floor.  If time is of the essence, light might be the better choice.

Size Of The Room

Darker floorboards can make a room appear smaller compared to lighter coloured floorboards.  If the room in question is already huge, that may not matter.  However, if you’re installing a hardwood floor in a small room and are worried about making it appear even smaller, a light coloured floorboard will provide you with the optics you need.